I teach workshops whenever there is demand, most often in Melbourne where I am based, but I can and do travel! I love teaching and sharing the traditional knowledge i have hoarded over the years. If you would like to take a class and it's not currently available in your location, please let me know, so that I can plan to visit your city!
Classes are tailored to the needs of the students in each class, and are workshops rather than lectures - I think students achieve more when you are writing, not just listening. I keep class sizes very small so that everyone can have the benefit of personal attention. It's impossible for a YouTube video, for example, to correct your pen grip. But that's why I'm here, and I can share with you what my teachers shared with me many years ago.
You will not walk out of any class an expert, but you will walk out with all the supplies, tools and techniques to become one if you practice.
COPPERPLATE FOR BEGINNERS: AN INTRODUCTION
For beginners and those who would like a refresher on the basics.
In this class we cover the basic strokes of the formal copperplate miniscules and how to use them to create letters and words. Students are provided with a kit including a "Moblique" oblique penholder, several nibs, a quality practice ink, and the smooth paper I prefer to teach with, and of course exemplars and informational handouts.
In class I tend to focus on pen grips and pen control on an individual level - skills you can't learn from online classes. I teach nib preparation, how to handle and adjust an oblique penholder, how to protect your paper, and how to set up your desk correctly for copperplate practice, as well as the strokes and letters themselves.
REFINE YOUR COPPERPLATE
For those who know the basics but would like to sharpen their skills.
Whatever your level, as long as you know the basics, this class can assist you
We will be working on refining your script to get you a few steps up from where you're at. I'll spend time talking about on tine control, ovals, parallel shades, and connectors - or other elements that you're struggling with. We'll talk about difficult letters (like the lowercase s!) and how to balance your shades and flourishes to create a polished and professional script.
These classes are small enough to work with students on an individual level, so if you would like to learn anything in particular, let me know and we can make it happen. Class kits include paper, ink, and nibs, and an oblique holder can be purchased in class.
NEXT OFFERED: TBA
Structural (Loops and swirls)
POINTED PEN FLOURISHING
For those who know the basics of lettering but would like to work on their flourishing.
Flourishing is at once the most satisfying and most difficult part of studying calligraphy - and not necessarily just copperplate. One bad flourish can ruin the look of an entire piece.
In this class we work through the basic rules of how to create a flourish that is balanced, even, and well aligned; we discuss where to put shade and where not to; we talk about whole arm movement and about planning flourishing that complements your whole piece, rather than just one word here and there. We discuss tine control and how to use the pen to help you, not work against it, and we will talk about when not to flourish, when to let your lettering stand for itself.
Class kits will include paper, ink, and nibs, but not an oblique holder (although these can be purchased in class).
TRADITIONAL COPPERPLATE: TERM STUDY
This course runs on Thursday nights, 6pm to 8.30pm for five weeks. It is only offered in Melbourne.
This is a slower paced course than the weekend workshops; we will take the time to thoroughly develop and understand the shapes of both miniscule and majuscule letters, spend time studying exemplars from the old masters and copying them, work individually on improving our skills. There will be homework tasks (but no detentions!) I will mark and assess your work, give you individual feedback, and guide you in your journey towards mastery of this delicate and elegant script.
We will also have time each session allocated to other calligraphy skills that are often skimmed in traditional workshops, like layout and design, planning your flourishes, pacing your work, and using various supplies. I have a studio full of tools and techniques I can share; I will be bringing different tools each week and discussing how best to use them. We will talk about the qualities of various inks, learn how to prepare pigment-based inks like Pearl-Ex, and discuss writing on different surfaces like hot-press paper, rounded bottles, or slices of agate.
At the end of five weeks, each student will have created at least one original piece using all the skills we have built together.